The Sea Voyage
This is an excerpt from my novel Beltane. In 1558, Margarete leaves her home in rural France, to sail to Scotland and an arranged marriage. On the ocean, she finds herself between two lives, which is both exciting and disturbing. Her servant/companion, more worldly than she, tries to make sense out of the world that must, from now on, be theirs.
In this prequel to Beltane, Lise brings all her considerable skills to bear on the task of making a new life for herself in Margarete’s household. Motivated by love as well as her own self-interest, she discovers inspiration in an ancient warrior queen, and finds the force of will to make all the right moves.
Before mass media such as this wavy internet you’re serfing around on, story telling was an art valued for entertainment,
education and cultural continuity. In this story, excerpted from Beltane, Owen, a master bard and raconteur, captivates his 16th century audience with a tale of loyalty, friendship and magic from the early days of Scottish history.
Lise is a woman of many talents. She knows that a story can be a powerful way to send a message. In this tale, excerpted from Beltane, she tells of the adventures of a magician of dubious morals, whose ambition becomes his undoing.
In 16th century France, physical courage is not on the list of skills deemed appropriate for a young noblewoman’s education, and Margarete cannot understand
why she is consistently encouraged to cultivate it. Her teacher however, is an uncommon woman who knows well its value. Feats of daring on horseback become
the means by which young Margarete begins to learn self-possession, and to first glimpse the potential of her own power in a world which would dismiss
her as merely a woman.